Bird Shop - Seven Dials

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 384
Date: 1888
Medium: etching
Size: 135 x 98 mm
Signed: butterfly at left
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 1
Known impressions: 8
Catalogues: K.281; M.276
Impressions taken from this plate  (8)


Bird Shop - Seven Dials was not published.


It was rarely exhibited. Impressions were shown by the New York print dealers H. Wunderlich & Co. in 1898 and 1903. 12

After Whistler's death, an impression was shown at the Grolier Club, again in New York, in 1904. John Charles Sigismund Day (1826-1908) lent one to the Whistler Memorial Exhibition in London in 1905. 13

12: New York 1898 (cat. no. 178), New York 1903b (cat. no. 211).

13: New York 1904a (cat. no. 313), London Mem. 1905 (cat. no. 289).


At first Whistler set the price at £8.8.0. On 29 June 1888 he sold an impression of 'Bird Shop' to the New York print dealers, H. Wunderlich & Co. for this price. 14 On 17 November 1888 he sold both 'Bird Shop' and 'Bird Cages' to the London art dealers Messrs Dowdeswell for £8.8.0 and £12.12.0 respectively. 15 A single 'Bird Shop' was also sold by the artist direct to John Postle Heseltine (1843-1929), again for £8.8.0 on 20 January 1889. 16

Single impressions of both 'Bird cages - Drury Lane' and ' Bird cages - Chelsea' were in stock at Wunderlich's, New York, in 1897; and finally, Wunderlich's recorded 'Bird Cages, Drury Lane' sold for only £5.5.0, by April 1900. 17

14: GUW #13052.

15: GUW #13028.

16: GUW #13037.

17: Wunderlich's to Whistler, [August 1897], GUW #07289.

Early collectors included Howard Mansfield (1849-1938) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2810108, Graphic with a link to impression #K2810109) and Clarence Buckingham (1855-1913) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2810102). Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919) bought one from Obach & Co. in 1903 a few days before the artist's death (Graphic with a link to impression #K2810103). Two were still in the artist's estate and were bequeathed by his sister-in-law Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958) to the University of Glasgow, (Graphic with a link to impression #K2810104, Graphic with a link to impression #K2810105) together with a later impression printed by Nathaniel Sparks (1880-1956) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2810110).